Everything we know about Den of Wolves

Payday meets Inception in this mind-melting sci-fi heist shooter
10 Chambers

Den of Wolves is the next big game from the makers of much-loved multiplayer FPS games Payday and GTFO. It’s a futuristic first-person co-op shooter where you work together to pull off audacious heists. But there’s a twist: some of the heists take place in people’s minds. 

According to Ulf Andersson, who co-founded Den of Wolves developer 10 Chambers, it’s Payday meets Inception with some Ghost in the Shell thrown into the mix.

“A heist that's not necessarily a physical heist,” says Andersson. “Or a heist that's not necessarily bound to the limitations of time or the same rules. It's very interesting.”

Den of Wolves gameplay has yet to be publicly revealed, but after a recent tour of 10 Chambers’ Stockholm-based studio, we’ve compiled a list of everything you need to know.

Where is Den of Wolves set?

The game takes place in Midway, a futuristic fictional mega city located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. It’s fully mapped out, with affluent uptown areas and a dodgy downtown. There’s even a team at 10 Chambers tasked with working on hundreds of logos for made-up companies to make it feel alive. Den of Wolves isn’t open-world, however. Instead, you dip in and out of missions selected from the city map screen. It’s session-based, so you can make your mark whether you have 20 minutes or two hours.

What’s the Den of Wolves story?

Set in 2097, you play a mercenary who takes on various gigs for the corporations in control of Midway. Nothing is off limits as you make a name for yourself and climb the corporate ladder: sabotage, espionage, asset theft, even assassination. Each mission has its own bespoke storyline feeding into a wider plot. Structurally it’s described as an anthology – think Black Mirror. That means you can pick and choose multiple missions in your own sequence rather than working your way through a linear narrative. 

What do you do in Den of Wolves?

Co-op heists are not always with money. One example involves downloading a businessman’s memories from a secured database to build an android replica of them, then replacing them with that replica in a highly classified corporate meeting. You can also make money with side hustles incidental to the main narrative. 

“You're basically arriving as a sort of a refugee or just hiding out in the lower sections of the city,” says Andersson. “You're outside of society, basically, and then you have to claw your way back in, try to get an apartment, and slowly try to build your character, in a way.”

Is Den of Wolves multiplayer?

Den of Wolves artwork showing a stylized robber in grey on white background.
Den of Wolves will have some mind-bending qualities to it. / 10 Chambers

Yes, this is a game designed for team play. It’s all about coordinating with partners to finesse your way into heavily guarded locations, or pooling your firepower to steamroll straight through the front door. You can drop into missions with friends or strangers fast, and there’s a sophisticated ping system if you don’t feel like talking. 

Can you play Den of Wolves in single-player?

The game is ostensibly co-op, but you can play alone. Some missions are more freeform, built to accommodate lone wolves lacking back up and organised team tactics, while others demand carefully coordinated plans of attack. One player might need to establish a defensive perimeter with sentries, for instance, while another takes out scouts in a sniper nest.

“Balancing-wise and experience-wise, you have a choice of either leaning into that cooperative bit and try to make a very strong cooperative experience, or you don't and you try to make this wishy-washy version that everyone will enjoy.”

Does Den of Wolves have microtransactions?

Den of Wolves mask.
Den of Wolves will feature customization options for your character. / 10 Chambers

10 Chambers hasn’t said what you’ll be able to buy, but your character is customisable, so you can picture a digital store featuring fresh gear and vanity items. Buying new masks for your character also seems a safe bet. The studio enlisted the help of renowned artist Issa Salliander to design a series of weird and wonderful face pieces for the game. There’s one with a big nose like the guy from Slipknot and another that looks like a baby. 

What is the Den of Wolves age rating?

Den of Wolves is rated 18 for one very good reason: you can shoot bystanders. During our tour of 10 Chambers’ studio we see concept art of a darkly lid club heaving with thousands of ravers. They might be in for a bad time. Once a game has any sort of player-driven civilian violence, it’s automatically given an 18 rating. Andersson alludes to more complex NPC behaviors than in Payday.

“You know how, let's say, Payday has a civilian mechanic and it always works like this. It's more interesting in the game to make it maybe a more limited feature and then do very different takes on it. You know, so, in this mission it plays out very differently than this other mission. So, yes, there are systems underneath, but we're trying to explore them with different thematics.”

When is the Den of Wolves release date?

The game will debut in early access. However, there’s no release date yet. 10 Chambers doesn’t subscribe to the traditional alpha-beta model, preferring the ‘it’s done when it’s done’ approach. The earliest you’ll see gameplay is in September when the developer brings a build of it to GamesCom. 

What platforms is Den of Wolves on?

Like Payday and GTFO, you’ll be able to find Den of Wolves on both PC and console.


Published
Griff Griffin

GRIFF GRIFFIN

Griff Griffin is a writer and YouTube content creator based in London, UK.